We still don’t know whether Patrice Bergeron will play in Game 3 against the Panthers, but if the Bruins captain doesn’t make the trip to Florida, it’s probably a safe assumption he won’t be suiting up Friday.
As of Thursday morning, though, we still don’t know whether Bergeron will make the trip. In fact, not even Bruins coach Jim Montgomery knows whether his No. 1 center will accompany the team to southern Florida. Montgomery told reporters Thursday he hasn’t been told definitively by the medical staff.
“I haven’t talked to medical and athletic trainers about where’s at as far as coming with us on the trip or not,” Montgomery told reporters Thursday morning, per The Athletic’s Fluto Shinzawa.
Bergeron has missed the first two games of the series with an upper body injury. He was on the ice prior to the team’s morning skate ahead of Game 2 but didn’t join the team for the pregame workout. Bergeron skated again Thursday morning, as seen in video captured by NBC Sports Boston.
The Bruins certainly could use Bergeron. Florida evened the series Wednesday night with an impressive 6-3 win in which the Panthers took advantage of an uncharacteristically sloppy performance from Boston. While Bergeron has been around the team to start the series, they would obviously benefit by having him not only back on the ice but on the bench, especially amid the adversity that is synonymous with playoff hockey.
The Bruins are scheduled to fly to Florida on Thursday afternoon. Regardless of whether Bergeron joins them, it wouldn’t be surprising to see some reinforcements on the trip. Montgomery hinted at lineup changes Wednesday night but didn’t offer any specifics. According to longtime reporter Mark Divver, Oskar Steen wasn’t on the ice for the Providence Bruins on Thursday morning as they prepare for their upcoming Calder Cup playoff run.
Game 3 is Friday night at FLA Live Arena. Pregame coverage on NESN begins at 6:30 p.m. ET.